A Case For No Scores

Readers write

May 12, 1991

From: Stephen Berry

Davidsonville

Athletic Association

I am writing in reference to the Anne Arundel County Sun coverage of the Anne Arundel County Parks and Recreation women's lacrosse game between Davidsonville and the Annapolis Lacrosse Club reported on Tuesday, April 30, 1991. I applaud The Sun forproviding this program the exposure which the girls and the league surely deserve.

However, I would like to clarify the league philosophy and some of the inaccuracies in your report. Official team scoresand team standings are not kept in this league. Yet your article reported that "Annapolis prevailed." In reading your article and adding up individual scores, the indication is that Davidsonville scored more goals. The fact is that both teams played a very competitive game, making them both winners and proving a case in point against keeping team scores. At this level, scores have little to do with team accomplishments.

When this league was formed, it was decided that winning was not to be the top priority. The teaching of skills, safety, field concepts and sportsmanship were to be the priorities. This would provide all girls an opportunity to experience success and to have fun.This philosophy was confirmed at this winter's pre-season meeting ofthe recreation council coordinators. A case for the benefits of higher levels of competition can always be argued. The fact still remainsthat the council coordinators endorsed the league philosophy and agreed to abide by these parameters.

I contend that the Anne Arundel County Parks and Recreation Department has provided proper direction for this activity. The league continues to grow each year, with many girls benefiting from their involvement. Many of the girls from thisleague have gone on to higher levels of interscholastic and intercollegiate play.

Often, coaches and parents are criticized for placing too much pressure on youth athletes. This blame should be directed to our society in general, which consistently demonstrates an obsession with winning. I hope that The Sun will continue to cover programs such as the women's lacrosse league and that it will attempt to promote the benefits of these of these activities which go far beyond teamscores and statistics.

Editor's note: The account of the game, inkeeping with the association's philosophy, contains no score. Unfortunately, a "winner" was established by a caption writer unfamiliar with our coverage and the association.

CHEERS FOR T-BALL LEAGUE

From: Mary Ellen Staley

Edgewater

I want to express my appreciationfor the article on the Mago Vista's T-ball for Handicappers League. It was an insightful and positive message for everyone. Your writer, indeed caught the 'special capabilities' and abilities of these children.

I work with many of these children on a daily basis. They truly give their all in everything they do. In the six years that I havetaught these young people, they have taught me much about courage, perseverance and determination and love. But what stands out most in my mind is attitude.

Things that we able-bodied do so easily and take for granted are often difficult challenges for these youngsters. Yet time and time again, I have seen them struggle, often fail, but continue to try.

These children have much to share and much to teachus. It is wonderful to see them have the opportunity to participate in an "American past-time." It is a chance for them to share in one of the growing-up experiences that they so often miss.

Hats off to those at Mago Vista who have worked so hard to organize this league. And hats off to the parents who support and encourage these very special children.

If you could have been in our classroom on Tuesday morning to see the joy expressed, the tales retold, the glories relived, you who have worked so hard would see that it was effort well spent.

NO SUPPORT FOR WEAPONS

From: Patty Andrews

Glen Burnie

One of the more amusing results of our brief war with Iraq is watching Congressman Tom McMillen (D-4) wrap himself up in the American flag. To his credit, he was one of the few Democrats in Congress who spurned his party's leadership on the vote authorizing President Bush to goto war. Yet while McMillen was eager to commit our troops to combat,he was not so eager to properly equip them for combat.

Since he entered Congress in 1986, the only weapon systems McMillen has supported have been those manufactured in this district. He has voted against the B-2 bomber, which we may need in the high-tech wars of tomorrow. He has voted against the Strategic Defense Initiative, and we should be thankful that Saddam Hussein had no intercontinental ballistic missiles. He has voted for defense spending cuts beyond what PresidentBush has requested.

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